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National Childhood Grief Institute

The National Childhood Grief Institute was a non-profit children's mental health center that provided emotional support and resources for children coping with grief, loss, and family transitions. Established in 1988. In operation through 1992.

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The National Childhood Grief Institute provided individual and family psychotherapy, assessments, support groups, consultation, and training for professionals.

The Institute was dedicated to raising public awareness regarding the nature of childhood grief regardless of a child's religious, ethnic or socioeconomic background.

The Institute encouraged the development of community support for grieving children in classrooms, churches, hospitals and other appropriate settings.

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Denise Daniels McNaught was Founder and Executive Director of National Childhood Grief Institute.

With a background in pediatric oncology nursing and counseling, Denise traveled around the globe providing crisis intervention to children during times of war, disasters and national emergencies.

In the Press

Grieving Lessons: Children Are Too Often Forgotten When It’s Time to Deal With Death” – Chicago Tribune, March 23, 1989

Families” – Washington Post, October 2, 1990

Kids Turn to Parents for Answers to War Queries, Fears” – Chicago Tribune, January 22, 1991

War in the gulf: Children; Early Lessons in Wounds of the Spirit” – New York Times, February 19, 1991

Our Work

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Provided mental health services to children and families experiencing grief and loss.

Served as a national model of best practices for working with children experiencing grief.

Provided grief training for teachers, principals, physicians, health care providers and military personnel.

Accompanied a Congressional delegation to perform needs assessments of children in Kenya, Uganda and Ethiopia.

Developed a PBS Peabody-award winning TV special helping children understand war.

Worked with retired General John Vessey, Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff for the U.S. Military, to provide support for families when mothers were deployed for the first time in American history during Desert Storm.

Consulted with Fortune 500 companies including AT & T, and General Mills.

Served as an expert for national media interviews during times of crisis and disasters.

Authored a series of grief workbooks for children.

Provided training for the Guardian ad Litem (GAL) program for Minnesota Family Courts.

Developed National Childhood Grief Institute bereavement and divorce curriculums.